Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Hooray for Good Mail!

Cutting Back sucks.

I repeat. Cutting Back SUCKS.

I miss shopping! I miss walking into a store and tossing whatever I want into my cart.

Well. I never got to toss WHATEVER I wanted into a cart. We are a military family after all. It’s not like the military pays us millions even though I totally think they should. But I was able to buy more than I’m buying now. And we were able to go out to eat more often which I loved because I hate to cook.

For those who don’t know, we’ve had to Cut Back since my old car started breaking down on us and we had to buy a new car. The new car is nice but it means car payments all over again. Oh, and slightly raised car insurance.

Target is one of my all time favorite stores. I could spend all day in there just pacing the aisles. If I didn’t have kids I’d probably be in there more than once per week and be dubbed “the crazy Target lady.” My heart races with excitement when I see the familiar red and white 75% off sign over a clearance rack. You won’t believe how many deals I’ve scooped up from there. Shirts, shoes, jeans, a snowboard....

Okay, so I don’t snowboard. But I may decide to take it up someday.

My husband didn’t comprehend this as I unloaded it from the trunk.

“Um,” he said, gesturing to the gorgeous dark board. “What’s with that?”

I gave him a cheerful smile. “A snowboard.”

Poor Tom. He doesn’t even know what a snowboard is. He really needs to get out more but the military overworks him. Which is why I totally think he deserves a raise.

Tom rolled his eyes at me. “I KNOW it’s a snowboard, Amber. But what is it doing HERE?” He looked utterly perplexed as I carried it into the garage.

“It’s for me. For the future. If I decide to take up snowboarding. It could happen,” I said with a sharp nod.

It COULD. I was watching Tori and Dean last night and they were snowboarding. It actually looked like a lot of fun. Nevermind that I’m not a huge fan of the cold. Surely I’d be bundled up so much that I wouldn’t even FEEL the cold. And okay, I’d probably start to panic if I started heading down the hill too quickly but that’s what lessons are for, right? Who knows, maybe I’d be really good at snowboarding and be featured in magazines. First timer becomes champion! the headliners might read.

You just never know.

“You’d never take up snowboarding. Just the other day you told me that the cold could kiss your ass,” Tom pointed out.

Oh. Well.

It’s true but like I said, I could bundle up in an adorable pink coat with a matching helmet and all would be well again. Then afterwards I could sit down and enjoy a hot chocolate. That would be my reward for snowboarding!

“It was 75% off, Tom. I only paid seven bucks for it. Isn’t it a beauty?” I stroked the board part and nearly got my arm caught in the bit where your feet must go into. I pretended that I meant to do it though.

“You’ll never use it. It’s going to sit in our garage forever and collect dust. I guarantee it!” Tom said before walking into the house.

Not true! I WILL use it! One day we’ll decide to vacation on the snowy mountains and we’ll totally snowboard. Then I’d be all, “Aren’t you glad I bought this snowboard?”

But anyhow, my real point of this entry is to basically whine over the fact that I can’t shop as much anymore.

I’ve been walking into Target and spending under $20 which rarely used to happen. I’ve had to avoid my favorite children’s store Gymboree because I know I’ll be tempted the second I set foot into the store.

I was actually doing pretty good avoiding Gymboree. Until I heard about this new sale. It was called the Stuff A Bag sale and everything was 30% off. Plus you could use a 30% off coupon on top of that. It would practically be a crime NOT to shop it. I called Tom and casually mentioned the sale.

“Get something,” Tom said.

He’s always urging me to buy something. He really is lucky that I’m not one of those women who would totally take him up on that and go crazy. Then again, he also urges me to buy stuff so when HE finds something he wants to buy then I can’t say no. Because then he’ll be all, “Well, remember when I let you buy....”

It’s annoying, really.

I decided to take a peek at the Gymboree site. Which was my first mistake. Because then I started oogling all the outfits and picturing Natalie in them. They have a new watermelon line that I started to get excited about.

Watermelons! Look how cute! Okay, so I’m not a HUGE fan of watermelons...I think I ate too many as a child because now I cringe when I have one which is a shame because watermelons are the thing to eat during the summer and you look like a total loser when you turn it down. Then people are aghast and are all, “How can you not like watermelon?” and it takes ten minutes to explain because no one can believe that someone doesn’t like the beloved fruit. But...watermelon on CLOTHES are just precious. Maybe if I just get ONE outfit...

And that’s basically what happened. I picked out an outfit.

It came in the mail the other day. I was thrilled. I’m always thrilled when it’s a Good Mail day. Do you know how boring it is to constantly get bills and magazines with god-awful products in them on a daily basis? I once got a magazine dedicated to golf stuff and I don’t even golf. I tried once and it took me a few tries to even HIT the ball. Plus I couldn’t get over some of the awful outfits that some people had on. This one guy had on a multi-colored shirt that just SCREAMED 1980s. His pants reminded me of something that Bozo the Clown would wear. I was so busy giggling at this that I could barely concentrate on hitting the ball and my husband was all, “Amber, it’s not the time to laugh, it’s time to be serious and hit the ball!” and that ended up making me laugh even more.

Anyhow, this is the outfit that I got from Gymboree:

Natalie HAS to do fashion shows outside.

She planted herself behind a giant weed. I really need to take care of the weeds in the yard at some point. Our yard is starting to resemble the yard on Malcolm in the Middle.

She's all, "Lady, what do you want from me? I'm done with pictures." And yes, she totally took off her shoes. She calmly took them off her feet and then chucked them across the yard. "All done," she told me seriously.

I got her to smile because I started bouncing up and down and pretending to do the Can Can. Several cars drove past as I did this.

I also got her the matching headscarf. It's very hard to put a headscarf on a wiggly child.

Then Natalie became infatuated with her belly button. I wonder if photographers have problems with getting Heidi Klum to stop looking at her belly button when they're trying to take pictures?

Oh gosh, that grass she's holding scared me at first. I thought it was one of those green stick bugs that the celebrities had to eat on I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here and let out a screech. Then I realized it was grass and relaxed.

So yes. It was thrilling to me to get some good mail.

But then more happy mail poured in!

My best friend Jennifer sent me my birthday package early. I turn 27 on the 19th of June.

The thing is, her mail attacked me.


Well, I was walking past the front door and all of a sudden a large purple padded envelope flew right in front of me and landed on the carpet.

How awful would it have been to be hit by my OWN birthday package?

I peeked outside and saw the mailwoman walking away. I suppose she had tossed it inside because it was raining and she didn't want it to get wet. Which was NICE, don't get me wrong, but goodness me, she should have made sure no one was WALKING by the door when she did it.

I could have lost an eye or something!

Okay, probably not, as the package was light but still.

Jennifer knows me well because she gave me this:

A $25 gift card to Gymboree!

I know, this probably means I'm wacked because I prefer to buy clothes for my children over myself. But the thing is, they're cute and tiny and things fit them properly. Me? If I find a shirt I like sometimes it bunches all weird in the stomach area because I have extra flab or sometimes my arms look fat and I vow to go on a diet that lasts all of two days...

It can be quite stressful, really.

But children's clothes...they're different.

I suppose I could get excited about shoes but I've never been a shoe girl. I mean, yes, I admire a nice pair of shoes of course...but most of them I can't even walk in. Like I knew a woman who had a pair of Jimmy Choos and I thought they were designed by a train or something. Then she was all, "No, Jimmy Choo the DESIGNER!" and showed me these high heels that looked dangerous to walk in.

Someone really needs to teach me how to walk in heels properly. Maybe if I get that down then I'd get more excited about shoes. Right now I walk into things and lose my balance when I'm in heels.

Anyhow, Jennifer's gift card couldn't have come at a better time. Gymboree will be having their Red Balloon Sale soon which means that they will be selling a lot of their older clothes for cheap. Rumor has it that this starts on Tuesday.

But wait! The next day I got MORE good mail.

See, Nikki over at Aunt of 14 was doing a giveaway and I won!

This is what she sent:

I LOVE The Notebook. The movie AND the book. This rarely happens. Usually they totally botch the movie up but this movie is fantastic. I'm still trying to get my husband to watch it with me. He's all, "I don't think so. If I sat through that you'd have to reward me. I'm talking sex every day for an entire month." Who has time for that?

She also gave me a beautiful keychain that I love. The keychain I used to have was of a scary looking buffalo that freaked out my daughter. So she much appreciates this new pretty non-scary keychain.

So thank you, Nikki!

Unfortunately, I think that's all of the good mail that I'll be getting. No wait, sometimes I get birthday cards so that'll be exciting!


  1. Awww Natalie looks adorable. Hooray for cute children!

  2. We've seen pictures of you. You cannot convince me that you have an ounce of fat or flab on you. You're perfect!

  3. Good mail days are the best!!! I'm hoping for a few good mail days soon, because I've got a birthday coming up, too. The watermelon outfit, by the way, is absolutely adorable!

  4. I love to shop too & I love Target. That outfit is so cute that Natalie has on. I dvr'd Tori & Dean. I'm gonna watch it in a little while. Congrats on the contest. I love getting mail too. I write to pen pals. I know it's kind of dorky, but I've been doing it since 1985. Anyway, I gave you an award. You can check it out on my blog.

  5. Happy belated b-day! And what arm flab?

    That's a great outfit. I have a brilliant idea for the snowboard. Get a slip n slide, fire it up and go down it on the snowboard!

  6. I really thought your daughter was practicing to be a stripper with that lifting up the shirt picture.

    And just do what I did! For my New Year's resolution, I vowed to make my husband spend less money so I could spend more money on myself. It's worked like a charm!

  7. Damn, she is GORGEOUS. And will possibly BE Heidi Klum when she grows up. At least Heidi's rich.

    I loved The Notebook. But sex for a month to get someone to watch it? Ha! Ain't no movie ever MADE that would make me wa....


    Excuse me...

  8. Good mail? I've forgotten what that was. Natalie and her outfit are precious, and I love her pigtails. Have fun a gymboree!

  9. Wow you really did have a great mail day! I LOVE GYMBOREE! It's a problem. AND I got the best shirt for $1.98 last night at Target. Booya! I love her watermelon photo shoot...too cute!

  10. It's a darn shame that you are buying clothing for your daughter on your birthday, that's what is criminal :)

    Head straight to Target, march to the back of the racks, near the 75% off stuff and buy yourself a shirt.

    Anti-Supermom orders.

  11. Happy Early Birthday....

    You should read my Snow Day in Hell post. (I'm sure we are twins :)

    Raising my hands here cause your the only other person I now know that doesn't like watermelon!

    I'm not a freak after all?

    (or maybe just a little less?)

  12. I prefer to buy clothes for my babies over myself too. They just look so cute in them. Love the outfit!

  13. Fantastic mail week for you! And your daughter is just adorable!

  14. Oh my goodness! How much does Natalie look like Tommy now! *squeal*

    I am highly amused at your snowboard deal - I can imagine such a spend is usually a considered purchase, but hey... its good to be prepared for all eventualities.. right? ;o)

  15. I loved Gymboree when the girls were little because I could always find the same outfit in their sizes, with the matching tights and little lady accessories that are entirely too precious.

    I love Natalie's scarf with that outfit. She's adorable.

    And, my mom's birthday is June 19th as well.

  16. Doh-- I AM one of those women who would totally take him up on that and go crazy!

  17. That outfit is ADORABLE! I love getting things in the mail...

  18. Love a good mail day, love Target, love Natalie's outfit, and loved shopping at Gymboree when my kids were wee. I liked that I could get them coordinating outfits without getting them exactly the same thing.

    Happy birthday in advance!

  19. I love the outfit! And snowboarding it totally fun .. we go almost every weekend in the winter. Target rocks and cutting back does suck!

  20. She's adorable, belly button or not. On that note, Heidi Klum's photographers might have a time getting her to drop her fascination with her belly button, but this model has none:

  21. what kind of camera do you have?

  22. I am like you and constantly buying Maggie clothes (whether she needs them or not). I LOVE the Children's Place myself (but we have an outlet store here - can you say bargain?). Glad you had a good mail day! Oh and the Notebook is the best - I don't think I have EVER cried so hard or so long in a movie!

  23. Thank goodness I don't have a little girl because I would be attacking Gymbo every chance I could get. Luckily (or unluckily) I am not really crazy about their boys' lines a lot of the time. Target rocks though! Your little girl is adorable. Have a good birthday. Oh and congrats on the 200 visitors in a day accomplishment. That is awesome.

  24. The watermelons are adorable.

    Good mail is freaking awesome! You got some good stuff.

    And, I would much rather shop for my kids than for me!

  25. I don't think there's anyone who could resist that cute outfit!

    I'm terrible with shopping. You have Target - I have QVC. If the UPS misses even ONE DAY at my house, I am depressed. On those days, I go to Target. :)

  26. That is good mail and I got my daughter the same outfit! lol. Gymboree has the cutest girl clothes!

  27. Your daughter is adorable!!

    And pass some of the good mail vibe over my way, if you please...

  28. LOL!!! The tone of your whole blog changed with the excitement of the shopping. I could feel in your words your adrenaline rush from buying something!

    I don't know how it happens. Well - I have some idea. But.... honestly as you age - you just don't give a darn about buying new things. At least, I don't.

    I don't want to shop. I have had enough. I'll post about it this summer.

    ****Your little girl was beautiful in the new outfit!! Fun day together with the photo shoot. :-)

  29. Yeah I love Good Mail! That scarf is the cutest thing I've ever seen! If I had a little girl like that to dress up, I'd rather shop for her then myself too!

  30. There is nothing like getting good mail! I love the little watermelon outfit! Natalie looks like a future supermodel for sure!
    And I'm guilty of buying more clothes for Reagan than I do for myself. Just did it today as a matter of fact!

  31. You were on a good mail run! That outfit is adorable...and well, so is your daughter! Too cute!

  32. Natalie is a charming little girl! I total get that "shopping" and cutting back thing. . . it's hard!
    I think it's great that you got that snowboard though. Now, here is a tip from one Mom to another. While you are about 12 years younger than me, my son, who was 16 at the time, thought I should give that snowboard a try. . HOney, it wasn't the helmet I needed it was the splints for my arms and legs. After doing two cartwheels, still attached to the board, down a "bunny hill", I wasn't much good for about two days. And if you would have seen my try to walk, well. . . I can't really explain that. . . it was kinda like Whoopi Goldberg in high heels and a dress. . . just not happening!

  33. Amber,
    Thanks for visiting my blog yesterday. I love yours! It is very entertaining. I'm hoping for a good mail day to come soon. I have several outstanding queries for which I am awaiting a response. Out of curiosity, what do you write? By the way, I did a complete makeover on my blog, which coincidently has a lot to do with shoes. I'm not a huge fan of them either, but they could be fun--especially if I was daring enough to wear some of the more outrageous pairs! Check out my new blog. I think you will enjoy!

  34. natalie is so cute, i can't even stand it. especially in her watermelon outfit. i have stopped going in malls (how sad is that) and immediately delete gymboree emails (and janie and jack and gapkids) when i get them. so so sad. i do love me some target, though!

  35. Natalie looked so cute in that watermelon outfit! And the shoes were too cute!

  36. Only 8 more days until your birthday! :)

    I had a good laugh at the snowboard episode... but hey, you are right, you just never know when you might get the urge to go out there and do the half pipe and some flips. Do it before the global warming thing ruins the powder though.

    You little one is just precious! :)

  37. Excellent deal on that snowboard! Doesn't he understand that 75% off clearance is enough reason to buy it? You don't actually have to use it. Men...{sigh}

    Don't feel bad though, my husband does the same thing. He agrees to whatever I want and then tucks that away for when he wants something. And it IS very annoying.

  38. I love good mail days! They are so few and far between that they stand out like beautiful red roses in a garden of weeds.

    And Gymboree...hard to resist. And the thing is, their clothes wear really really well and the sizing is amazing. My son lasts in those Gymboree clothes FOREVER. we found a Gymboree outlet once .. it was heaven.

    And Target. I buy useless stuff all the time because it is so cheap. How can you resist buying something that is only $1.24!!!! Sure I don't need little gardening clogs but they were only $1.24!

    And your daughter is beyond cute!

  39. Well....happy birthday to you and to gymboree. I'd probably have my house in hock to that place if there was one close enugh.

  40. I really like shopping also! Target is a wonderful place! I love good mail days!

  41. I LOVE that outfit!!! Great photos.


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